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Rollout for Doc B-29 Superfortress

Forties Boogie Woogie and big-band sounds set the stage as hangar doors opened for Doc, the Boeing B-29 Superfortress being restored for flight.

A tug pulled the still-grounded giant out into the Kansas sun as the music changed to the Air Force Song, “Off We Go Into the Wild Blue Yonder.”

A VIP crowd of volunteers and friends of Doc applauded the rollout on March 23 on the campus of Spirit AeroSystems in Wichita, Kansas. The event took place exactly 70 years after Doc’s initial delivery to the U.S. Army Air Forces.

Doc was among the 1,644 B-29s built in Kansas during World War II. The aircraft sat decommissioned in the Mojave Desert for 42 years until Tony Mazzolini and other aviation enthusiasts came to its rescue.

Fifteen years and 300,000 volunteer hours later, Doc was ceremonially re-delivered to representatives from McConnell AFB.

A visibly moved Master of Ceremonies and Doc’s Friends Chairman Jeff Turner has advanced this B-29 for years, working to restore it to flying condition.

Jeff Turner
Jeff Turner

He asked the hundreds of supporters in attendance, “Doesn’t the aircraft look great?” He then introduced Mazzolini, calling him Doc’s savior, preserver and champion.

Turner joked that he was allowing Mazzolini only five minutes to tell his four-hour story. We’ve heard Mazzolini give presentations to the Wichita Aero Club and other organizations and can say from firsthand experience, this riveting tale could fill a book.

If you ever get a chance to hear him talk, take advantage of the opportunity.

A 40,000 ft Classroom

Tony Mazzolini
Tony Mazzolini

“The dream was always to restore Doc to flying condition and turn it into a flying museum to help keep the memories alive,” Mazzolini said. “That’s why we brought it back to Wichita where it was first built and delivered.”

Turner is well acquainted with Doc’s birthplace. He spent 40 years at Boeing, then Spirit AeroSystems, retiring as CEO in 2013. He introduced Larry Lawson as “CEO of a place very near to my heart.”

Lawson, Spirit AeroSystem’s current CEO, spoke about Doc and acknowledged in the audience both pilots who flew the plane and Rosie the Riveters who helped build it. He also referenced the innovations that made the B-29 such a game changer: first pressurized plane, first computerized plane, remote-controlled turrets. He said, “It’s great to see this beautiful plane restored.”

Flying up to 350 mph at 40,000 feet, the B-29 could fly faster and higher than most interceptor aircraft. It dropped the world’s first atomic bombs.

Larry Lawson
Larry Lawson

The Enola Gay bombed Hiroshima on August 6. Bockscar hit Nagasaki on August 9. Japan surrendered on August 15, 1945. Lawson recognized the more than 50 million people who died throughout the course of WWII and how the fighting consumed the entire globe.

Many see the B-29 as a tool that helped bring the devastating war to an end.

More Than An Aircraft: An Idea

Presenter Col. James Dermer, vice commander of McConnell Air Force Base’s 22nd Air Refueling Wing, said that more than technological breakthroughs, Doc represents an idea. That a nation’s power lies in the ability to innovate. To come together in a spirit of cooperation and mutual respect. He said the restoration shows what can be accomplished through willpower and dedication.

Flight engineer Robert Pearson was among the many veterans attending Doc’s rollout. Pearson flew 32 B-29 wartime missions.
Flight engineer Robert Pearson was among the many veterans attending Doc’s rollout. Pearson flew 32 B-29 wartime missions.

Doc will be one of only two B-29s restored to flying condition when it takes flight later this year.

The Commemorative Air Force has the other, named Fifi. Doc’s Friends estimates it will take an additional $7-9 million to finish the restoration, get the plane flying and secure permanent hangar space.

The group is dedicated to keeping Doc in Wichita. Which is good. During its peak wartime activity, Wichita was delivering an average of more than four B-29s a day.

By war’s end, 60,000 workers had engaged in the effort to churn out essential aircraft: bombers, gliders, trainers, drones and more.

Doc's nose art
Doc’s nose art

To learn more about how you can get involved with Doc’s Friends and support its educational mission, visit

Photography by Randy Bradbury

This column ran in the March 26 issue of BlueSky Business Aviation News.

Kansas State Fair TV Commercial Wins Telly Award

Greteman Group, agency of record for the Kansas State Fair, was awarded a Bronze Telly for the 2014 Kansas State Fair TV commercial.

Telly Award Winners represent the best creative work from the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators and corporate video departments in the world. The judging panel consists of accomplished industry professionals, all past winners of a Silver Telly and members of The Silver Telly Council. The organization receives more than 12,000 entries annually.

“The colorful, inviting and zany food illustrations capture your attention and make you crave the novelty and once-a-year-experience the Kansas State Fair provides,” says Sonia Greteman, agency creative director and president.

The campaign creative locks in on the fabulous fair foods, the major entertainment and the madcap midway. The theme communicates a core human need – food – and adds the urgency of not missing a must-attend social event. To view the spot, please visit

Greteman Group was also awarded a Telly in 2013 for the Kansas State Fair commercial, which can be viewed at

Founded in 1979, the Telly Awards is the premier award honoring outstanding local, regional, and cable TV commercials and programs, the finest video and film productions, and web commercials, videos and films. Winners represent the best work of the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators, and corporate video departments in the world.

It’s always a blast call at the Kansas State Fair. From the opening bell to the final grandstand blockbuster. So get on a stick and head for the world-class Midway, blue-ribbon animals and family-friendly activities. It’s pure Americana – an event not to be missed. Party with your pals and hear the hottest performers at the Nex-Tech Wireless Grandstand. Tour the many agricultural and educational displays. Win prizes. Brave heart-pounding carnival rides. Sample some fried ’n’ joy – and other culinary delights. Enormous vegetables, odd artifacts, homemade crafts and the infamous butter sculpture provide something for everyone. Nonstop fun from Sept. 11-20, 2015, the event is the largest in the state of Kansas with crowds numbering more than 350,000. The fairgrounds are in centrally located Hutchinson, Kansas. Mark your calendars now and plan to join Kansans from across the state – along with visitors of true discernment from around the world. For more information, call 620.669.3600, toll free at 800.362.FAIR or visit

Connect with the Kansas State Fair | Kansas State Fair on Twitter | Kansas State Fair on Facebook | Kansas State Fair on Instagram

Wichita Eagle
March 25, 2015

Wichita Eagle; It’s time for Wichita and its young professionals to help each other

I’m about to enter the professional world. While exciting, I wonder if I’m fully prepared.

Sure, I’ve completed the requirements for my college degree, I’ve interned at a reputable marketing agency, and I’ve asked my mentors countless questions.

Concerns remain: How can young professionals make an impact in already established industries? How should young professionals go about representing their organizations in new, creative ways?

As I begin to ponder my post-grad involvement in the community, I’m torn. Boards and committees are time-proven options. Nearly every professional I know has served on one or is serving. They create a platform for bringing professionals together for purposes unachievable alone.

I’m exploring these sorts of opportunities, but I want to contribute in other ways, too. I ran my first marathon last October. While 26.2 miles sounded like a good idea when I began training, executing proved much tougher.

Jordan Bradbury poses with her father, who helped her train and also ran the marathon alongside her.

As a marketing student at WSU’s Barton School of Business, I contemplated what I wanted to advertise for five hours while running.

Serious runners get creative with this portion of the race. Then it hit me: I should display our agency’s name. I approached our president and creative director about the possibility, and she quickly agreed. It was truly an incredible feeling hearing “Go, Greteman Group!” during mile four of the race. I won’t soon forget it.

It’s time for fresh thinking. The National Business Aviation Association got creative in 2014, debuting a program for young professionals. Its goal: attract qualified newcomers to business aviation and foster professional development. As baby boomers retire, the next generation needs to be at the ready. The initiative helps grow and nurture young talent in the industry.

Talented young professionals all too often graduate and leave Wichita. I see the brain drain as many of my fellow graduates move to communities they perceive to be bigger or better.

Jordan Bradbury is brand coordinator for Greteman Group and will graduate from Wichita State University in May with a degree in marketing and management.

Growing up in Wichita, I’ve witnessed first-hand the impact companies have made, which inspired me to see what I can accomplish here.

Feeling valued from the start at a company is huge to the millennial generation. I’m a testament of that. From the beginning, I was welcomed as a team member with potential. I have been challenged professionally and I have honed my skill set. And who to better serve with this skill set?

The community that helped make it happen. Wichita offers rewarding career paths and opportunities for personal growth. Brainpower fuels our economy, particularly here in the Air Capital.

I encourage other young professionals to represent their companies in creative ways.

Let’s be part of the solution. Join in on the discussion groups on LinkedIn. Check out the professional groups in the area. Start something of your own. Young professionals, it’s time for us to step up.

This column ran in the March 18 issue of The Wichita Eagle.

Sonia Greteman Inaugural Inductee to Fine Arts Hall of Fame

Sonia Greteman, creative director and president of Greteman Group, has been named an inaugural inductee into Wichita State University’s College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame.

The newly established Hall of Fame recognizes the College of Fine Arts’ alumni, community contributors and teaching/staff mentors. The inaugural class serves as the Hall of Fame’s founding members. They will be honored at an event this spring. The complete 12-member group includes:


Joyce DiDonato, international opera star
Bill Gardner, creative director/design firm owner
Sonia Greteman, award-winning creative director/agency owner
Shirley Knight, award-winning actor
Samuel Ramey, international opera star

·       Lewis and Selma Miller, patron of the arts
·       Edwin A. Ulrich, patron of the arts
·       Gladys H.G. Wiedemann, patron of the arts

·       Jacquelyn Dillon-Kraus, professor
·       Mira Pajes Merriman, professor
·       Richard (Dick) Welsbacher, professor

“Being in the inaugural class with my former art-history professor Mira Merriman and the man behind my beloved Ulrich Museum adds such meaning to this already special honor,” says Sonia Greteman, agency creative director and president. “WSU’s commitment to art elevates our entire community.”

Make the Most of Sponsored Posts

So you’ve been following the proliferation of sponsored content across social media platforms, and you’re ready to take the plunge.

First, and most important, keep in mind that sponsored content should look and feel different from your standard advertising. Think of it more as sharing your wisdom and expertise, rather than making a hard direct sale.

Pick Your Platforms

Your next task: determine which platforms offer the best fit for your audience. Facebook has sponsored ads; Twitter offers promoted tweets; LinkedIn features sponsored updates; Pinterest, promoted pins; YouTube, promoted videos – and so on.

For aviation clients, we highly recommend taking a hard look at LinkedIn. But you should consider any of the platforms that your particular customers are using. Short of conducting a research survey to find your customers, you can do some searches on the various channels and review conversations that reflect your specialty. More channels creates more reach. Sponsored-Grphx_01-02

Play the Numbers

Remember that you’re still playing numbers games. No form of engagement – even a personal visit and handshake – guarantees complete success.

According to Facebook estimates, for example, an average of 16 percent of a company’s followers will see every post. That number changes based on how engaged your fans are. If they simply became a fan but never look at or interact with your page or any of your posts, they aren’t likely to even see your posts.

When you promote a post, you greatly increase the number of people who will see it – although it still won’t be 100 percent. Sponsored-Grphx_01-01

The Content Competition

You’ve been hearing for years now that content is king. So has everyone else. So now the digital space is glutted with tons of content – a lot of it bad. (We’ll address that in another post.) But some really good content gets ignored because no one sees it. So the first thing is to produce content that your target market will find compelling. Then promote it across multiple channels to increase its odds of getting seen.


Promoted Content Pointers

  • Direct your promoted tweets to a specific audience by using the targeting options. These tweets act like others – they can be retweeted, replied to, favorited etc. They will carry a “promoted” tag, and users can dismiss them if they wish.
  • You can also promote your Twitter account with a tweet that includes a “follow” button. It will then appear on targeted users’ timelines and on their “who to follow” sidebar.
  • On LinkedIn you can take an update you’ve already posted and push it out to your specific target audience.
  • You can also push out a LinkedIn display ad, which allows you to include an image or video as well as copy. Be sure to include a strong call-to-action. These ad can appear in multiple places – home page, profile page, company page etc. – depending on the ad size you choose.

When you post a sponsored update on LinkedIn, the word “Sponsored” appears, as in this recent Greteman Group post. Note that it includes an eye-catching visual and a call to action with a link.

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 5.04.05 PM

Twitter tags promoted tweets with an arrow and a “Promoted by …” Both of these examples also have strong visuals, calls-to-action and links.

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 4.56.00 PM

Screen Shot 2015-03-17 at 4.56.40 PM The days of just putting good stuff out there and waiting for the world to beat a path to your door are over. If they were ever here.

This column ran in the March 19 issue of BlueSky Business Aviation News.

Think Big, Think Bold

Just Don’t Think Like Everybody Else

When I thumb through any major magazine, aviation publications included, I am often amused. I can’t believe how many companies spend money just to look like everyone else. My litmus test on these “Me too” ads is to cover up the logo and try to figure out who it is. A gorgeous airplane glistening in a spectacular sky is stunning, but is it distinctive? Does it communicate your company essence?

Big Ideas

I’ve always appreciated a more disruptive approach. Whatever you are, whatever you believe, take a stand for your brand. I look for authentic, eye-catching ads that are different and move me to actually read the copy. That pull me in to find out more. Ads that make me a tad uncomfortable. Because you know what? They got me to look.

Words and Images Dancing Together

When we work on brand vision, we don’t just find a stock photo and call it good. We work hard to unite words with visuals, until they dance together. Heck, we love it when they do the tango. Seamlessly blending and supporting each other. Creating a choreography that will turn heads and make you feel. A ballet of wit and passion.

Typesetting Versus TypographyThinkBig-SupportGrfx_01A

Typography – a designer’s secret weapon – can send the right message or the wrong one. Type serves as the air traffic controller directing you where you need to go, and confirming you have arrived. We choose appropriate fonts, finesse and kern. We set type boldly to accentuate a point, or keep it whisper light to communicate softness, sensitivity and elegance. Type is misunderstood by many, but when used properly can convey the emotion of a word. Call attention to a required action. Or make you fall in love with a company.

The Power of Headlines

Headlines do the heavy lifting. They express the essence of an idea in a few quick words. If a headline doesn’t grab you, you’ll never read the body copy. A headline can make or break your ad. We put our headlines through exhaustive boot camp, flexing every muscle and working every angle until they become strong and powerful and can lift that idea out of the ordinary. Headlines pull emotion – make you laugh, think, cry. And make you buy.

Dominance and Relief

Anyone who has been around me knows my philosophy on what makes a design work. It’s a simple concept, but difficult to execute because we tend to want everything plus the kitchen sink in our designs. My approach calls for dominance and relief. Give me something big and simple to establish a hierarchy. Support it with something smaller and less important. Build elements to create yin-yang relationships and bring balance to the design. So that each element allows the others to be seen and heard.

A Rare and Beautiful Thing

Great design, like an exotic bird, is rare and beautiful. When you see it, it stops you in your tracks. A lot of competent design bombards us every day. Even more loud obnoxious design pollutes our visual fields and insults our intelligence. But when brilliant design crosses your path, you know it, even if you lack the vocabulary to describe it. Take time to savor it. Apple, Starbucks, Louis Vuitton, and Target all deliver.

Color Your BrandThinkBig-SupportGrfx_01B

Color transports you to other worlds. Warm subdued hues of gold and amber fill you with feelings of a sun-baked afternoon. Blues and greens radiate a cool, clean, fresh feeling of crisp spring mountain air. The color wheel never disappoints with its choices and options to transform a design. Selection and manipulation of color is one of the most beautiful gifts in a designer’s paint box. Color is tricky, not to be used lightly, overused or abused but massaged with skill, cunning and subtle control.

Strategy Rules it All

In advertising as in business, strategy rules. Know your objectives, understand your target market, articulate your unique selling proposition. But most of all define what makes you special. Then be bold. Be different. Be unreplicable. And tell the world.

This column ran in the March 12 issue of BlueSky Business Aviation News.

WBJ; Two local business owners among inaugural inductees into Wichita State’s fine arts hall of fame

Wichita State University’s College of Fine Arts has created a Hall of Fame and named Sonia Greteman a member of the inaugural class. The following is an excerpt from the Wichita Business Journal’s coverage on March 9:

Sonia Greteman, owner and founder of the Greteman Group, will be inducted into the inaugural class of Wichita State’s College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame.

WSU’s fine arts department says it is recognizing people who have excelled in various forms of art, such as design, music, theater, musical theatre and dance. The hall of fame also recognizes the contributions of faculty, staff, community patrons and donors on behalf of the College of Fine Arts.

Click here to read more about the Wichita State College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame: Two local business owners among inaugural inductees into Wichita State’s fine arts hall of fame

Wichita Business Journal
Josh Heck

© Wichita Business Journal, 2015